Fairy tales and wicked evil stepmothers go together like a bat and a ball. Currently, the German legend of a certain little goody-good and her regal tormentor has taken Hollywood by storm.
Why didn’t I see this in the theater?? Everyone else did. It placed at #1 earning a $56.3M box office during its first weekend. It must have been a perfect date movie. There’s violence and blood and Middle Ages-style fighting. Special effects throughout, as well as super sized scale of battle and castle scenes are impressively testosterone-laden. But, don’t be fooled. This is a woman’s movie inside and out.
It’s not just Ms. Theron’s star turn as crazy Queen Ravenna. Oops. Not crazy. Eeeee-vil and freakin’ GORGEOUS. At first, it was very, very, very difficult for me to believe that any Snow White, especially one played by Kristen Stewart of Twilight fame, could be more fair than Charlize Theron. Confession: I had an LOL moment when Ms. Stewart first appeared on screen. Prettier than Charlize? Please.
Best Movie Villians of All Time, but she isn’t a quarter as terrifying as Ms. Theron’s Queen Ravenna.
As for The Huntsman, well, he’s a really good looking fella, Australian Chris Hemsworth. The huntsman and the dwarves are just part of a plot that surprises again and again. Mr. Hemsworts a good actor (Thor prepped him for the fight scenes), but I was listing the reasons why this is a woman’s movie, remember?
Without giving anything away, I can tell you that the huntsman, and every other man and beast in sight, follows one woman or the other. Queen Ravenna takes control of the realm –and the movie– almost as soon as she appears. The evolution of Snow White from hesitant innocent to a force in Joan of Arc-ish armor, is actually believable. The ultimate confrontation of Good and Evil, Snow and the Queen, is a spectacular girl fight that ranks with TV’s classic push-her-in-the-pool scene between Dynasty’s Krystle and Alexis.
In Mirror Mirror, the viewer never really knows what became of the withered, aged Queen in the end. Magic may have spirited her away. Snow White and the Huntsman leaves no doubts about who wins; the magic is that Snow White has some modicum of compassion available for the one who wanted her dead.
Much of this movie’s style, grace and creative eye-poppers are credited to director Rupert Sanders. Yes, he’s the man we now know was having an affair with Ms. Stewart during filming. At the time, Ms. Stewart was attached at the hip to her Twilight co-star Robert Pattinson. Mr. Stewart’s wife, Liberty Ross, was playing a small part in this movie as Snow White’s mother. Yes, Kristen’s on-screen mother. And yes, it is all quite tacky.
Don’t let a little boom-chicka-wow-wow on the set deter you from this movie. Seriously. I give it my highest praise: I want to watch it again. Soon. If you think you know the Snow White story, guess again. This ain’t no fairy tale.
And, if a movie insists on featuring an evil, childless, wicked stepmother Queen, Charlize is the one to get.
Universal Studios Home Entertainment is releasing Snow White and the Huntsman today, September 11, as a combo-pack with DVD, Blu-Ray, digital download and how’d-they-do-that features.
**No compensation was accepted for this post. A DVD was provided by Universal Studios Home Entertainment for reviewing purposes.